WORKING on an island paradise like Musket Cove Island Resort in the Mamanuca Islands, may seem a little overwhelming, because you get to call this little piece of heaven your office every single day.
Recently I was given the chance to visit and stay at the resort for its annual Fiji Regatta Week and the experience was one that will stay with me for a very long time.
So I understandably started to think, "if this is how visitors felt while visiting the Resort than how does the workers and those that have made this place their home feel about this place?"
Enter. 47-year-old Lote Lawa from Fulaga in Lau.
Mr Lawa has been a staff at the resort for over 17 years and was one of the many employees who said they would not trade places with anyone for the opportunity to work at Musket Cove.
"Not a day goes by that I feel like I'm truly lucky to be here," said Mr Lawa.
The former diver, fisherman, cook and now one of the dive shop assistants at the rsort, Mr Lawa has lived and worked on the island "all his life" as he likes to put it.
But his road to island paradise did not start off smoothly for him.
While working odd jobs as a cook in the 1980's, Mr Lawa finally landed a steady job as a fisherman.
A job which drew him out to the Mamanucas where he would supply fish to the resort.
"I just started off as a fisherman over here and I did that for about five years, but after a while, I knew that I had to get something better. So I tried diving and taking tourists on diving tours."
"We'd go to the Yasawa's and a lot of tourists enjoyed diving there," he said.
He also says this led to one of the worst experiences of his life.
"We went to this village near Macuata and we made our i-Sevusevu before going out diving. I had a about five tourists with me.
"We were at the beach preparing to dive at a place where there were a few houses and we did not know that was a different village from the one that we had just been to. This man saw us and I could see that he was not happy that we were there.
"When I went closer, he called out "Dou sa cakava na nomudou i-Sevusevu se sega?" (Have you presented your i sevusevu or not?").
"I told him we had done so at the other village and he replied in Fijian that one had to be presented there as well.
"At that point he came running towards us with a cane knife!" said Mr Lawa.
He said the guests that he was with were terrified and the group never looked back at the knife-wielding man when they ran for their lives back to their boat.
"I never wanted to go on a diving tour ever again after that," added Mr Lawa.
Shortly after this experience Mr Lawa went back to fishing and was soon back in the Mamanuca's at Musket Cove Island Resort.
It did not take long for him to get another job. He was approached by the resort's longest working staff with another job offer.
"I'm very thankful to be part of this team because it feels like a family here. We're away from our own families so we have to make do with the people you work with and they become your family."